In the past few months, the problem of fake news has alarmingly risen in India which even led to several accidents and catastrophic violence. Due to the IT cells of different political outfits and several organizations, it is becoming excruciatingly hard for journalists to distinguish the thing line of difference that exists between the ‘real’ and ‘fake’ news.
In order to combat this problem and reinstating authoritative journalism as its top priority, Google has introduced Google News Initiative Training Network in India in partnership with BoomLive, DataLeads, and Internews.
The training program aims to train 8000 journalists over a period of one year in English and six other Indian languages on various ways to identify fake news and how to eliminate it.
The Network will first select 2000 journalists from all across India who will participate in a five-day workshop. They will be trained by global verification experts and top Indian fact-checkers. These certified trainers will train more journalists in and around their region at 2-day, 1-day and half-day workshops organized by the Network. Training workshops will be conducted in English, Hindi, Tamil, Telugu, Bengali, Marathi and Kannada.
In an official blog post, Google announced that the applications for the program will be considered on a rolling basis, with limited seats for each language.
There will be three rounds of applications to become a Google-certified trainer:
Round 1: Deadline is July 5 for the first English train-the-trainer boot camp, which will be held in Gurugram from July 30-August 3
Round 2: Deadline is July 15 for trainers in Hindi, Kannada and Tamil and English
Round 3: Deadline is September 15 for trainers in Telugu, Marathi and Bengali and English.
Recently, more and more social networking websites have finally started acknowledging the dire need for data privacy and fact-checking. Prior to this, Twitter is planning to collaborate with several law enforcement agencies a to combat fake news. ahead of the upcoming 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
Facebook has also partnered with BOOM to introduce a third party fact checking programme in India.